What I learned
Posted by Jeff Condon on June 26, 2011
I doubt I will spend much time on this paper life is short and you have to pick and chose what you will spend your time on. The thing is complete bunk in my opinion and I can’t believe it was published, but that is what some of the dark corners of climatology bring us these days.The paper is chock-full of unsubstantiable assumptions and layers of bad math including sections with complete dependence on Mann08 but that is only a chunk of the poodo.
In the SI there was a dataset which gave the relative sea level for Carolina (blue line). The slope of the line pre-960AD is almost exactly 1mm/yr, this extends throughout the trend length.
The red line is the blue line with 1mm/year added in by me for GIA corrections per Kemp’s procedure. What makes it mildly interesting is Fig 2.
In pane C (the bottom one) we see that sand point comprises all of the record pre-1950. The sea level rise is stated to be zero mm/year and the correction to the data was stated in the actual paper to be 1mm/year for glacial isostatic adjustment. In other words, Carolina is sinking at 1mm/year.
After seeing my data in Fig 1 look so flat from to 950, I fit a line to it in excel. The slope x from -120 AD to 932 AD was 0.0000086 m/year (black line in figure 1) or a 8 mm of change in a thousand years. We can safely say that if this is correct, sea level didn’t change at all. This IS an astoundingly perfect result considering the confidence intervals shown in pane C of Fig 2 above. I suppose at least that part fits well with the storyline that Gaia was happy before the humans were.
Noticing that the blade of the hockeystick started earlier than temperatures, I fit a line from 1900-1948 – well before global temps were rising due to CO2 – this is of course due to the magic aerosol correction to models which repressed the warming effects of CO2 from the industrial age. Unfortunately, I found a 2.3mm/year trend or 115 mm increase before CO2 became an issue. This is fairly amazing considering that sea level had allegedly stayed so flat for thousands of years prior to the industrial production era AKA, human prosperity. It is also surprising in that this increase corresponds to 9 inches/century, well beyond any measurements I have read. The paper recognizes it in the following quote.
GIA-adjusted RSL change from AD 1900 to 2000 in North Carolina (24 ±5 cm) exceeded the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) AR4 estimate for global 20th century rise (17 ± 5 cm), although the uncertainty ranges overlap.
The trend of 240mm/century is outside of the 95% confidence interval for the IPCC. To those of us with our climatology sea legs, it is no surprise that the result wasn’t terribly concerning as it is on the correct side of results. I’m not at all sure what “uncertainty ranges overlap” is supposed to mean statistically in this context, perhaps someone with clearer eyesight can explain it.
So what is the anthropogenic story line supposed to be for the paper??
Gaia was minding her happy bird filled existence expecting an eternity of changeless glory
Along came civilization (AD 1000), and a
half quarter meter bump in sea level?
Then came industrialization and CO2 output (1900).
Temperatures were initially unaffected by CO2 because aerosols were cooling the earth and net climate forcing was negligible.
Predicting the future climate forcing, after thousands of years of slumber,
Neptune awoke and the sea level preemptively rose, in warning of future warming doom.
As he predicted, reduced aerosol output was unable to keep up with CO2 forcing and temperatures began to rise,
What followed was melting ice caps, glaciers and thermally expanding ocean volume coincidentally at the same rate as before the warming
in fulfillment of Neptunian scripture.
I have to say folks, I don’t know one thing more about sea level rise than I did before reading this mathematically gross scientific disclosure. I didn’t even bother pointing out the absolutely goofy quotes in the paper. It is left to the reader to find those.